Written by: Corinne Carter, Relationship Therapist
In the busyness of day-to-day life, it’s easy to become ungrounded; that is, disconnected from our bodies and our own lived experiences. When we become ungrounded, it tends to feel like we’re just going through the motions of the everyday, on auto-pilot and not really paying attention to our own state of being. If we do happen to pay attention and take notice of how we’re feeling, we’re likely to notice ourselves feeling stressed, overwhelmed, and emotionally out of balance. As such, finding ways to stay grounded is important to our overall wellness. Here are some tips for re-grounding yourself:
- Disconnect to Reconnect: Make a point of turning off your devices on a daily basis – cell phones, computers, televisions, etc. – and spend some time living technology-free. Technology is not the enemy; it can be a great tool for staying connected to friends, family, and the world. But it’s important to maintain a balance. Disconnect from your devices for a set time each day and reconnect with your immediate surroundings.
- Get Creative: A great way to ground ourselves is through creativity. Engaging in the creative process brings together both action and awareness and helps us to connect to the present moment by inviting focus. When we are engaged in a creative activity, the activity is an end in and of itself. As such, creativity invites us to experience meaning in the present moment. Paint, write, sing, play....create!
- Practice Mindfulness: Jon Kabat-Zinn defines mindfulness as “paying attention in a particular way; on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally.” In other words, mindfulness means that we are consciously aware and accepting of our present experience. There are many benefits to mindfulness (e.g., decreases in stress, anxiety, and depression; improved sleep; decreased pain and conflict in relationships; etc.), as well as many ways to practice mindfulness in our daily lives. Here is a guide to practicing mindfulness in 60-seconds using the S.T.O.P. method (Stop – Take a few deep breaths – Observe – Proceed): http://www.mindful.org/mindful-voices/on-mental-health/60-seconds-to-a-stress-less-life.
There are countless ways to get grounded when you feel yourself starting to float away from your own life; the examples above are just a few ideas that you can try. This past weekend, I decided to get grounded by planting a garden. Being out in nature, with my hands in the dirt and the sun on my back, I felt fully engaged in my present experience. I was calm and connected. Not even the mosquito army circling my head could take me out of the moment! I've included a couple pictures of my garden in this post below.
How do you get grounded when you feel yourself getting out of balance? What are your go-to "get grounded" strategies? Share your ideas below!
P.S. Thanks for your patience while we've been away from the blog! We've been going through lots of transition as we moved to a new office, and have welcomed a number of new folks to our team. We hope to be back here more regularly over the summer!